parents to feel awkward about bringing young children to Mass. If, when they
are in the church, the toddlers or infants begin to fuss and cry, the parents
often struggle to quiet their little ones before other parishioners become
annoyed. Many parishes now have cry-rooms to segregate these noisy kids from
the rest of the Christian community.
For me, as a priest, the sound
of crying children calls to mind the mystery of the sacrifice of the Mass.
priests recognize that the sound of young children is the sound of the future
of the Church. What a joy it is to hear children at Mass! If the Church is
pro-life, how can we possibly be upset by the presence of an infant?
he would be happy to welcome quiet babies but not noisy ones, I reply that his
love is a matter of words only, since quiet babies hardly exist. In any case,
we must love the child in our midst, not merely the “perfect” child who exists
only in our mind.
teach their children, and discipline them (in all meekness and clemency).
Parents must instruct these little ones in how to pray during Mass.
that infants and toddlers would be anything other than noisy and distracted.
There is no sin, nor even slight fault, in an infant crying at Mass. But there
is sin in the adult who, in his heart, passes judgment on that child’s parents.
opposed to cry-rooms (how can we justify expelling children who have committed
no fault?!), I suppose that they do give some parents at least a bit of relief
when things get out of hand. So, if a parent wants to make use of a cry-room,
that is his prerogative; but I am convinced that it is a sin for another to judge
a parent for not making use of the infants’ ghetto.
to think when children cry during Mass
kids cry so loud, I can’t stand it!”
things one can consider when we hear children crying. They are the future of
our parish. Their noisy cries call to mind the inaudible lament of the souls in
purgatory, for whom we ought to pray. Such noises teach us patience. And so
wept at the foot of the Cross
during Mass, let the sound of those tears call to mind the mystery of the
Cross. The Holy Mass is, of course, one with the true sacrifice offered by
Christ once for all upon the Cross at Golgotha. The Mass is a sacrifice, it is
the Cross? And who was insensitive to those sounds of weeping?
the torments which our Savior suffered in his ignominious Passion, the Angelic
Doctor ends with the following pain, which was most grievous of all:
beholding the tears of his Mother and of the disciple whom he loved.” [ST III, q.46, a.5
infants weeping (and even wailing) call to mind for you the tears shed by the
Sorrowful Mother of our Savior, and by St. John the Beloved. Can you hear the
wailing of St. Mary Magdalene, she who was overcome with grief? Consider also
the other devout women, who wept strait through from Friday till early Sunday
far away now, weeping alone – having betrayed the Lord whom he loved, more even
than all the others.
did not weep, but instead scoffed at the mourners
weep? The soldiers … ignorant, and brutal. The crowd … fickle and unloving. The
priests, scribes and Pharisees … filled with hate.
authorities more than the others who took offense at the noise of those who
wailed and wept. These ones, righteous in their own estimation, had not even the
charity to be touched by the tears of the Blessed Mother.
spiteful glance in the direction of a crying child (or his parents)? How can I,
or any, wish these children to be exiled from my presence? Am I, or you, so
holy as to be above charity?
the sounds of these crying children call these thoughts to mind. From the lips
of babes, our Lord has found praise – and we will have been instructed in the
sublime mystery of the Cross.
I, being a rough little fellow …
the heroic St. Josemaria Escriva – though he was speaking of that other event in
Jesus’ life which mystically foreshadowed his death (namely, when his Mother and St. Joseph lost him at the age of
twelve, and found him in the Temple on the third day).
individually and says,
fellow, I cry my eyes out and wail to heaven and earth, … to make up for the
times when I lost him through my own fault and did not cry.
united in sin. And, from the depths of our being come sighs of heartfelt sorrow
and burning phrases, which the pen cannot and should not record.”
pray that God will allow a little child to cry – lest I should ever lose sight
of the mystery which I am consummating.
NB. I would ask that all comments have at least a pseudonym attached (even if only at the end of the comment itself).
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